Like many states, Michigan has a few delicacies you just can’t find anywhere else. Here are some of the signature eats that perfectly capture the taste of the Great Lakes State.
Any discussion about iconic Michigan foods has to include cherries. Montmorency cherries, to be specific, are the most commonly grown and account for Michigan’s reputation as the primary tart cherry-producing state. These delicious stone fruits are consumed in every form imaginable, not just in traditional pies and tarts. Michigan boasts a smorgasbord of cherry-infused products, including but not limited to cherry butter, barbecue sauce, tea, salsa, sausage, pancake mix, ice cream, salad dressing, licorice bites and more.
Hanover’s Michigan Mints
These colorfully wrapped chocolate mints are bursting with flavor and state pride. Round discs embossed with an outline of the state of Michigan, they also feature a key ingredient: Michigan-grown mint.
See more: Why You Should Choose Michigan Cherries
Mackinac Island Fudge
Located in Lake Huron, Mackinac Island is an idyllic vacation spot, but it isn’t just the historic sites or attractions that draw visitors. This island is famous for one delicious thing: fudge. With seven specialty fudge shops on the island, it’s no wonder that fudge is the most popular souvenir. Some shops, like Joann’s Fudge, offer as many as 25 different flavors.
Also known as a Boston Cooler, this twist on a root beer float combines traditional vanilla ice cream with a different soda: Vernors ginger ale. Some people prefer to pour the soda over scoops of ice cream and eat it with a spoon like a traditional float; others like to blend it to a milkshake consistency. No matter how you make it, this ice cream and carbonation pairing is undeniably delicious and fizzy.
See more: Michigan’s Top 10 Agricultural Products
Frankenmuth’s Chicken Dinners
Anyone who’s tasted a Frankenmuth chicken dinner understands why it’s famous. With light breading and minimal frying, this savory dish strikes a perfect, delicious balance. But the appeal of the Frankenmuth chicken dinner isn’t just about the taste – it’s about the atmosphere, and it’s about tradition. The Bavarian Inn Restaurant and Zehnder’s, both owned by the same family, offer unique dining experiences. The former features waiters dressed in traditional garb, while the latter’s exterior is modeled to look like Mount Vernon, paying tribute to colonial America. Combined, these restaurants serve more than 2 million chicken dinners a year.
Other Michigan delicacies:
• U.P. pasties – a type of meat pie, popular in the Upper Peninsula
• Oberon beer – a Michigan favorite, brewed by Bell’s Brewery
• Sanders candies – beloved sweets, with retail locations across the state
• Coney dogs – Flint, Detroit and Jackson all have a different take on these delicious dogs